Our Christmas Break 2017 was so great! We were able to enjoy our first official "Winter Break" from school with Tyson off the whole time so I would say that it was a success! (He did have to squeeze in a bit of work but it was so small and didn't interfere with our plans so ...no problem!)
We saw Moana and loved it. We've been singing the songs over the past few days, getting them stuck in our heads each time. Taryn LOVED Maui and how he could change into animals. We all loved HeHe- the chicken. The girls kept talking about HeHe for days! Haddie loved Moana's pet pig. Oh so good!
Tyson said it best- "We're not always spontaneous, but when we are, we end up at a Chocolate factory." We had a few days of warmer temperatures before a cold front came in so we decided to take advantage of it and head 2.5 hours to Pennsylvania. It was a fantastic decision! We loved visiting Hershey World. It felt a lot like Disneyland and we were surprised that after 3 hours there, we had happy girls and no complaints. Maybe that's because we revolved our excursion around chocolate :)
We toured the chocolate factory and saw how chocolate is made, we ate at the Chocolate cafe/ bakery- so delicious! Tyson had pulled pork with cocoa in it and I had their signature Chili with cocoa in it.
The girls picked little stuffed toys that had a pocket of candy. The perfect amount of chocolate after spending a day in the Chocolate factory.
Then we headed to Lancaster, PA. We saw the Herr's Mill Historic Covered Bridge. It was beautiful! Taryn and I walked up to it first (Haddie was asleep in the car) and we walked around it. There was a cute antique sign that said, "Kissing Bridge" over the top as you enter the bridge.
Then we head hooves on the street and looked to see and Amish buggie. It was so weird because we didn't see anyone inside. Weird!
Trying to get the bridge in the picture, we took a few shots. Taryn requested that we make a few silly as well.
Just beyond the beautiful covered bridge in Amish country, we saw this old mill. I love all the rich history we are surrounded by!
The best end to the night was Dutch Wonderland, a theme park built for children ages 2-10. Really, it was perfect for the girls. Taryn is and forever will be our little thrill seeker. Haddie had her reservations but surprised me with being willing to keep riding, even after being on rides that we didn't realize were a little more scary
Like this Turtle Whirl . We had no idea it went so fast, even after watching it. We all laughed the whole ride while Haddie screamed for dear life. It was so funny/sad/scary/and fun. It surprised us by how fast and fun it was but I have to admit, it was so fast even I was scared so I can only imagine how scared Haddie was. I had to keep whispering pep talks in her ear the whole ride.
We left only 15 min. before it closed because being out in 32 degree weather for several hours started to get to us. The girls were so sad to leave, even though they were freezing. It was a day well spent and we have to thank Tyson's old boss for recommending this amusement park to us a few years ago.
On another great weather day we headed to the Zoo. Haddie wanted to see the horses.
Taryn wanted to see the Amazonia Turtles.
Tyson wanted to see the Oriole.
And I wanted to see the Bison (added to the zoo recently. )
It was an awesome day at the zoo. We really took advantage of all the time we had and really enjoyed our time together. We brought Taryn's scooter along this time so while Haddie was in the stroller, Taryn could scoot along. It really saved us going up the BIG zoo hill to get to our car.
My sister Brittany had the great idea to take the kids to the Nutcracker (puppet version) geared toward kids from 2-5. Taryn loved the puppets and was totally entranced with them. Haddie thought it was a funny show and really liked it. The twins Cora and Braden were giggling at parks and constantly pointing out the new puppets that came out. It was a fun outing and reminded me of when I did this 3 years ago with Taryn and friends (Lynne/Logan & Paige/Ada)
3 years ago, we were here from New Years, our first time not being with family. So we wanted to do something fun and different. The only place opened on New Year's Day that would suit our family was Haute Dogs. So a tradition was born...because it was amazing. Gourmet Hot dogs with delicious toppings. We had to do this tradition a few days early but it was still super delicious.
The Booths sent us "Fort Magic" for Christmas and it has been so fun! This is the 2nd one we made. We've played so much in them!
During a few of our free moments, we headed to the library and played with the Magna Tiles and checked out lots of books.
Our New Year's Eve was spent with friends with kids. We celebrated at 8pm and it came at just the right time for the kids to melt down. We brought poppers, noise makers and a few hats for the celebration.
I had forgotten to take a picture of Taryn who is a lover of any celebration. I remember 4 years ago when we were at my parents house and Taryn ended up staying up with us until after midnight (a combination of an allergic reaction and medicine mix up) but a lot of it has to do with her love for parties. So though she was in her jammies and I believe there were tears right before we took this photo, she was still happy to give me a smiling face and show off her celebration skills.
Here's to 2017 and the end of a wonderful Christmas Break.